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Suffolk GPs aim to debunk dangerous myths about antibiotics

Antibiotics are not a cure-all medicine and should not be used unnecessarily.

That’s the message of an online campaign led by NHS clinical commissioning groups in Suffolk and Essex.

Dr David Egan, a Debenham GP, said: “It is important that we use antibiotics in the right way and that there’s a greater understanding around what antibiotics can and cannot do for us.

Dr David Egan (21696703)
Dr David Egan (21696703)

“Antibiotics are very powerful medicines that fight certain infections and kill or slow the growth of bacteria.”

In a coordinated effort, the bodies are publicising what antibiotics can and cannot do for us. It all ties in with World Health Organisation’s Antibiotic Awareness Week, which runs November 18 to 24.

Dr Egan continued: “When used properly they can save lives, but many people believe they can cure viral conditions such as colds, coughs and sore throats.

Less is more: Antibiotics (21696998)
Less is more: Antibiotics (21696998)

“This is not the case, as antibiotics don’t work on viruses and won’t make you better if you are suffering from a viral infection.

“You should only take antibiotics if they have been prescribed for you.”

The clinical commissioning groups have decided to take action after a reported rise in antibiotic-resistant infections.

Dr Egan said: “If you are feeling unwell please don’t be tempted to pop some antibiotics belonging to a friend or family member or use any old antibiotics you have kept from a previous illness.

“It won’t help you and may cause your condition to deteriorate.”

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